Do you know which is our largest organ?
Yes you got it right! It is our skin, but do you know that adults are carrying about 8 pounds and about 22 square foot of it?
Our skin is the largest and also one of the most important organs in our body, without which, we would just disintegrate. How does good skin save your life?
Our skin is also sometimes known as the third kidney. Not only is it the largest organ we have, it can also be one of the best ways for us to detoxify our bodies and stay healthy.
Dry brushing is good to remove uric acid and toxins thrown out by the kidney. We can sometimes get sick if our pores start clogging up with uncleared gunk, and we are not just talking about your face.
Our skin keeps us safe from UV rays from the sun, the extreme temperature changes, is waterproof and it also acts as a insulating shield. Our skin also secretes antibacterial substances that prevent infection and creates vitamin D to help convert calcium into healthy bones and teeth.
Our skin is also a huge tactile sensor packed with nerves that generates feedback to the brain - quite unbelievable if you think about it! Every inch is doing its part to keep us strong and healthy!
What is our skin made of?
Mad About Skin!
1. The epidermis (the outermost layer which will keep getting replaced and it takes 5 weeks for new skin cells to reach the surface, only to be shed and renewed over and over), is the layer that keeps us safe from infections through the defensive Langerhans Cells, which alert the body's immune system to viruses and other infectious agents.
Melanin which gives the skin its colour is also produced in this layer. Darker skin tend to combat UV rays better, and lighter skin was adapted to better absorb the Sun's rays to make Vitamin D which strengthens the bones. The downside is that people with lighter skin is also more prone to skin cancer, so having external uv protection ( creams, sprays), is absolutely necessary.
2. The dermis, which is under the epidermis, gives our skin its strength and elasticity thanks to fibers of collagen and elastin.
Blood vessels help regulate body temperature by increasing blood flow to skin, allowing heat to escape, or by restricting the flow when it's cold.
Sweat glands bring down internal temperature through perspiration while ridding the body of the waste fluids, urea and lactate.
Apocrine glands, which develop during puberty, produce a scented sweat linked to sex appeal, that can also cause body odor, especially around the armpits.
Sebaceous glands secrete oil-like sebum for lubricating the hair and skin, keeping our skin soft and smooth.
3. Finally, we have the subcutis, which includes a seam of fat laid down as a fuel reserve in case of food shortage. It also works as insulation and cushions us from knocks and falls.